Scottish YouTube personality Count Dankula — real name Mark Meechan — was found guilty at Glasgow Sherrif Court Tuesday of a hate crime, and potentially faces two months in prison after recording a video of his girlfriend’s dog doing Nazi salutes.
Reporting from inside the courtroom, journalist and street organiser Tommy Robinson said Meechan had been found guilty of being “Grossly Offensive” under the Communications Act of 2003. Meechan was due to be sentenced Tuesday afternoon but the judge decided to release him on bail, to return to court on the 23rd of April.
Recess called to await sentencing.
— Count Dankula🏴 (@CountDankulaTV) March 20, 2018
The case is over a 2016 YouTube video made by Meechan and published on his comedy Count Dankula page of his girlfriend’s dog Buddha raising its paw in return for a treat, having been trained to respond to phrases.
Buddha’s owner Suzanne Kelly had previously said “He (Buddha) will lift his paw to virtually anything if he gets a treat for it. We have taught him to lift his paw to food, like ham or cheese,” and that her boyfriend had “never expressed anti-Jewish or anti-Semitic” views and has “always been very supportive towards minority groups”, reported Herald Scotland before the trial.
Speaking outside the court Tuesday morning, Meechan said: “It’s been two years of my life completely put on hold, I’ve not been able to get a job, there have been threats against my life… threats off Antifa, far left radicals.”
“They’ve tried to portray me as a racist and a Nazi, apparently context doesn’t matter anymore.”
Explaining how a simple joke had been taken out of context, Meechan said: “What they should have realised from the start is realise how ridiculous this entire thing is, okay he’s just a shitposter, he’s an edgy comedian’, there are famous comedians who have done much worse than me [like Frankie Boyle] and you don’t see them getting arrested.”
“The thing which makes it so ridiculous is that this is over a joke, I’m a Youtuber, I made the joke video for a laugh… but then people wanted to misrepresent that.”
Speaking to journalists waiting outside the court waiting for the verdict before he went inside, Meechan blasted the police and mainstream media for having colluded before his arrest, allowing journalists to set up outside his home to photograph and record him being taken away by officers.